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Migrant Puerto Rican women in the United States under economic stress: A theoretical framework for a national study
This study examines current understanding of the experience of Puerto Rican migrant women as they cope with a new environment. Acculturation theory is analyzed and found limited in its conceptualization of migration as confined largely to the individual. An interdisciplinary review of the literature is used to explain the process of adaptation as an interplay of personal and social factors. The personal and social functions of ethnicity and gender are found critical in migrant women's search for economic advancement. A demographic account of the experience of Puerto Ricans in the United States is provided. A review of empirical studies suggests that being head of household is a significant factor keeping Island born Puerto Rican women out of the labor force. This economic disadvantage is seen to affect the process of acculturation, and reciprocally, acculturation is seen as a requirement for labor force participation. A multidimensional framework is developed which explains that the exclusion of these women from the labor force is rooted in this country's issues of gender and ethnicity. Educational implications are discussed and suggestions for public policy are included. Future research must investigate the effect of prevailing social influences on migrants which place assimilation as their most desirable status. Acculturation studies must focus on the interrelated nature of ethnicity and gender and incorporate into their analyses the effect of socioeconomic resources on adjustment. The experience of migrant Puerto Rican women heads of household must be further examined and new methods derived to quantify their status by means of the available census procedures. A longitudinal national study of the experience of Puerto Ricans in the United States would provide significant interdisciplinary impact.
Minority & ethnic groups|Sociology|Families & family life|Personal relationships|Sociology|Social structure|Social research
Garcia, Karen Marie, "Migrant Puerto Rican women in the United States under economic stress: A theoretical framework for a national study" (1989). Doctoral Dissertations Available from Proquest. AAI9001505.